Thomas Bridge 18 June 2014

Shared services drive from East England councils

Shared services drive from East England councils image

Shared services should ‘be the way forward’ in the east of England if councils are to effectively face budget restrictions.

Chairman of the East of England Local Government Association (LGA), Cllr Tony Jackson, encouraged town halls to commit to joint working.

While Cotswold, Forest of Dean and West Oxfordshire District Councils and Cheltenham Borough Council recently revealed plans for ‘the most radical joint working approach in local government’, Jackson emphasised it was instead councils in the east of England that were ‘leading the way’ on innovative service delivery.

‘In these times of budget restrictions and economic uncertainty it is more important than ever that we learn from each other share experiences and best practices so as to deliver the best public services that we can,’ Jackson said.

Mid Suffolk District Council leader Derrick Haley added that councils should also be allowing the ‘human element’ to enter into town hall partnerships, building trust, forging new relationships and ensuring good communication.

Haely said: ‘I think the East of England can be proud that we have so many farsighted councils which are delivering great outcomes in new ways in very challenging financial times.’

The Brownfield Land Release Fund image

The Brownfield Land Release Fund

To what extent does this early initiative of the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities deliver on the ‘levelling up’ agenda? Lawrence Turner reports.
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